Taylor Swift, Gwen Stefani, And More Top Our 2012 American Music Awards Best Dressed

Sure, time flies when you’re having fun. But you know what? Time ALSO flies when your eyes are darting between Taylor Swift’s ballgown-masquerade switcheroo during her “I Knew You Were Trouble” performance, or when you’re busy watching Ke$ha get lifted up by tons of studly dudes…or when you’re trying to keep track of Nicki Minaj’s many outfit changes. Bottom line: the American Music Awards clearly lived up to its sky-high expectations, and the outfits were just as epic. The stars clearly pulled out all the style stops tonight, and from the statement details to the color trends to the rad beauty looks, the effort undoubtedly shows. We’ve combed through all of the gorgeous red carpet looks from tonight to bring you our totally official MTV Style American Music Awards Best Dressed List™. Tough job, but someone’s gotta do it…


Taylor Swift at the 2012 American Music Awards.
Photo: Getty Images

Taylor Swift is a star who truly knows which dresses work best for her — which, if you come to think about it, is the reason the girl lands on pretty much every Best Dressed list…like, ever. But whereas her signature look usually includes a flared skirt, retro silhouettes, and a red color palette, we’re pumped to see the singer mixing it up in this beaded Zuhair Murad minidress. With a short cut and a low back, the frock is a bolder look than we’re used to on Taylor, but we LOVE all this experimentation. Next up, pants? You never know…


Gwen Stefani at the 2012 American Music Awards.
Photo: Getty Images

Whereas most of the other starlets hit the red carpet in flouncy dresses, leave it to Gwen to pull a 180 and rock head-to-toe Balmain runway amazingness. The No Doubt frontwoman killed it in an oversized velvet blazer (!!) and black leather pants from the French fashion house’s Fall 2012 collection, adding personal touches like a cross necklace and black bralet.


Nicki Minaj at the 2012 American Music Awards.
Photo: Getty Images

Um, first things first: Nicki Minaj wasn’t the first person to wear this Monique Lhuillier strapless gown. Modern Family star Julie Bowen donned the dress at this year’s Emmy Awards, and Paula Patton rocked it before her. BUT there’s a reason this frock is so freaking popular, and it’s because it looks awesome. The neon green hue is SO Nicki, right?!


Carly Rae Jepsen at the 2012 American Music Awards.
Photo: Getty Images

Carly Rae Jepsen cashed in on one of the biggest trends of the night in her shimmery Gomez Gracia gown, proving that despite personal prom memories, a floorlength halter dress definitely doesn’t always have to equal high school dance. She let the dress really take the spotlight, accessorizing with basically no jewelry and a simple hard clutch. Nicely done!


Ginnifer Goodwin at the 2012 American Music Awards.
Photo: Getty Images

There was a collective (virtual) “oooh” over the MTV Style online chat when we simultaneously spotted Ginnifer Goodwin in this Oscar de la Renta dress. We love the short sleeves, the modest neck, and the adorably retro cut. Plus, with her close-cropped hairstyle and major mascara action, well…let’s just say Twiggy would be proud.

We’ve told you our Best Dressed, now tell us yours! Who gets your vote for the #1 outfit of the night?